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Refereed Articles

Comparative Politics

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Full-Text Articles in Education

“We’Re Off To Replace The Wizard”: Lessons From A Collaborative Group Project Assignment, Miguel Centellas, Gregory J. Love Jul 2012

“We’Re Off To Replace The Wizard”: Lessons From A Collaborative Group Project Assignment, Miguel Centellas, Gregory J. Love

Miguel Centellas

This article examines the effectiveness of a collaborative group learning project for teaching a core competency in comparative politics: constitutional structures. We use a quasi-experimental design and propensity score matching to assess the value of a consti- tutional writing group project and presentation. The results provide strong evidence that these learning tools are highly valuable for teaching abstract concepts. Students who par- ticipated in the project scored significantly higher on a short series of questions in final exams given several weeks after the completion of the group project. Somewhat paradox- ically, the project increased competency but did not affect student ...


Pop Culture In The Classroom: American Idol, Karl Marx, And Alexis De Tocqueville, Miguel Centellas Jul 2010

Pop Culture In The Classroom: American Idol, Karl Marx, And Alexis De Tocqueville, Miguel Centellas

Miguel Centellas

This article discusses the use of pop culture in the classroom as a means to teach foundational political science authors and concepts. I focus on my experience using Amer- ican Idol as a point of reference to discuss Marx and Engel’s The Communist Manifesto and Tocqueville’s Democracy in America in undergraduate comparative politics courses. Stu- dents are asked to construct a written argument projecting Marx or Tocqueville’s percep- tions of American Idol, based on their readings. My experiences demonstrate that asking students to reflect on their own contemporary experience through the prism of these two works helps ...